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Author: Don Obrien

Financial and gift card incentives may encourage more vaccinations at college campuses


SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Unvacccinated students are learning of incentives that may encourage them to get the COVID-19 shot, especially with required vaccination deadlines coming up in October.

Santa Barbara City College started the fall classes this week and notified students on a variety of protocols.

The SBCC website has an “Important Notice fo Students, Faculty and Staff” that reads:

Based on the passage of Board Resolution No. 1 – COVID-19 Immunization, “full” COVID-19 vaccination is required by October 1, 2021; all students, employees, and members of the public should have their second shot of Pfizer or Moderna – or their first shot of Johnson & Johnson – vaccine by Sept. 17th in order to qualify for full vaccination by October 1st. Immunization verification must be provided to SBCC as a condition of:

  • Entering an SBCC campus building
  • Attending an in-person SBCC class
  • Using a service located off-campus

This applies to all students, employees,  and members of the public unless they have obtained an approved exemption based on medical, disability, religious grounds, or a deferral based on pregnancy.

The campus has scheduled several vaccination clinics.

Timing is important for those who have not had their first shot. If they get their initial dose this week, they will have time to get their second dose, and have room for the extra required 14 days, to meet the deadline.

The process also comes with a $100 incentive after the second shot.

“The county wants us to keep a close eye on the spread of COVID  and do whatever we can to prevent that on the campus,” said nurse Michael Yee who is on the COVID response team.

Many students lined up, because they did not want their semester flow changed from on campus to a remote plan.

“I just wanted to get my shot today to keep coming to school.    It’s really important to me,” said first year student Sandra Manzanarez.

Some got their shots because they wanted to play sports and not be sidelines.

Zack Schipper is on the Vaquero football team. “I did hold off for awhile until I actually needed to do it and it was essential for me to get it.  And it came to the point when they told all the team to get it in order to play this season.”  

A team mate, Kai Singleton said, “they just told me to get it because I will end up needing it somewhere down the line. “

The school is partnering with local pharmacists to help the students through the process.

The school says about half the students were very interested in the $100. but mainly they were getting the shot for their protection. “We want to reward positive behavior  and recognize that they are are contributing to helping out the community stay safe.”

One international student who just arrived is getting her shots, 5462 miles apart.
Ariana Esteve is from Spain and shot number one was in Europe. “I got my first shot  because I was studying in London and they told me there was a walk in,” she said. “Now I am here and I am getting my second shot”

Even after this special clinic the school will be assisting students in several ways to get their COVID vaccinations either on campus or at a pharmacy nearby

There are other schools with incentives in the form of gift cards up to $250 and also a chance to win a $5,000 scholarship. Some campuses offer food including pizza and Chick-fil-A, a chance at free parking, tuition benefits and even housing assistance.

Coronavirus / Education / Safety / Santa Barbara – South County / Santa Maria – Lompoc – North County / Video



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